Author Topic: Hiring Ghostwriters on Upwork  (Read 1113 times)  

Offline Tanu

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Hiring Ghostwriters on Upwork
« on: March 17, 2018, 09:41:19 AM »
While hiring writers on Upwork, is $1 per 100 words too cheap these days for non-fiction writing? Or has anyone had a good experience at that price? What is the minimum cost at which you get good quality writing (for fiction and non-fiction)? Please share your experience.
Also what would be the approx. time frame for writing 10,000 words?
(I have read this about someone who had a good experience at that price, probably hiring from outside the states, from a different country)
« Last Edit: March 17, 2018, 01:17:49 PM by Tanu »

Offline Marseille, France or Bust

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Re: Hiring Ghostwriters on Upwork
« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2018, 01:27:24 PM »
Probably better to find a real author/writer on your own and get a bid from them. Using the upwork process for a book doesn't sound like a good idea.

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Offline GeorgiaCM123

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Re: Hiring Ghostwriters on Upwork
« Reply #2 on: March 17, 2018, 02:22:26 PM »
Many years and many websites ago, I had an author contact me to review the book that he claimed he'd just written--all by himself. I had a quick look, and found a whole lot of content lifted directly from my website. No acknowledgements. Just a lot of stolen content.

Apparently, he'd worked hard to develop the content in that book and he was a leader in his field. I emailed him back and gave him my thoughts on copyright. In a panic, he responded with a very quick turnaround. He didn't write that book after all. He'd hired a ghostwriter from a site like upwork, and that ghostwriter had lifted the content from my website. The moral of the story is don't use those sites to look for a writer. I've used them on occasion to solve technical problems with my websites, but I'd never go looking for a writer there.

Offline DCRWrites

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Re: Hiring Ghostwriters on Upwork
« Reply #3 on: March 17, 2018, 04:04:11 PM »
While hiring writers on Upwork, is $1 per 100 words too cheap these days for non-fiction writing? Or has anyone had a good experience at that price? What is the minimum cost at which you get good quality writing (for fiction and non-fiction)? Please share your experience.
Also what would be the approx. time frame for writing 10,000 words?
(I have read this about someone who had a good experience at that price, probably hiring from outside the states, from a different country)

Yes. That is too cheap.

I've earned well over a hundred thousand dollars on Upwork and its predecessor oDesk over the years and I wouldn't even look open the email for that rate. There is no real minimum cost but if the person you're looking at doesn't have both good reviews and a minimum posted hourly rate of at least $25.00 you probably aren't going to get anything other than crap from a content farm.

As a counterexample, I wrote a short story called Exile, which is currently sitting at #48 in short reads for science fiction more than five years after its release that went to an Upwork client for a lot more than $0.01/word.

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Online L_Loryn

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Re: Hiring Ghostwriters on Upwork
« Reply #4 on: March 17, 2018, 04:44:53 PM »
I occasionally grab clients on Upwork when I'm low on funds. My price per word started with $0.02 years ago and now it's somewhere around $0.25+ depending on what the work consists of. I have my hourly rate as $30/hr, but I never take hourly work because I work fast and it's not a good deal for me.

There are definitely good writers on Upwork, but you're going to pay for it.

As far as time frame-- depends on the rate. For my clients, if the per word rate is low, I won't rush to get it done. If the per word rate is higher, I'll work a little faster. I'd say for 10k words, 10-14 days would be the turnaround time with a decent per word price.

Offline RightHoJeeves

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Re: Hiring Ghostwriters on Upwork
« Reply #5 on: March 17, 2018, 04:46:57 PM »
Well when I write web copy I charge $0.40 a word (not through UpWork obviously). And Im not even particularly expensive.

So personally I kind of doubt youre going to get anything good for $0.01 a word.

Tbh this is why ghostwriting doesnt seem particularly economical unless you have a lot of capital and decent assureances youre going to make the money back. Its a product that requires a lot of work and pretty specialised skills. At your rate, a 70,000 work would cost $700. Obviously $700 isnt chump change... but a 70,000 word book isnt something you can knock together over a week without taking a lot of shortcuts.

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Offline Tanu

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Re: Hiring Ghostwriters on Upwork
« Reply #6 on: March 18, 2018, 01:49:00 AM »
Thanks, that is great. Please share what was your per word charge for that short story. Thanks.

Yes. That is too cheap.

I've earned well over a hundred thousand dollars on Upwork and its predecessor oDesk over the years and I wouldn't even look open the email for that rate. There is no real minimum cost but if the person you're looking at doesn't have both good reviews and a minimum posted hourly rate of at least $25.00 you probably aren't going to get anything other than crap from a content farm.

As a counterexample, I wrote a short story called Exile, which is currently sitting at #48 in short reads for science fiction more than five years after its release that went to an Upwork client for a lot more than $0.01/word.

Online Anarchist

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Re: Hiring Ghostwriters on Upwork
« Reply #7 on: March 18, 2018, 06:25:36 AM »
There's ghostwriting and then there's ghetto ghostwriting.

$0.01 per word is ghetto ghostwriting.

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Offline EllieDee

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Re: Hiring Ghostwriters on Upwork
« Reply #8 on: March 18, 2018, 08:46:18 AM »
Quote
There's ghostwriting and then there's ghetto ghostwriting.

$0.01 per word is ghetto ghostwriting.

LOL!     :D

Also, agreed.  I'm not going to bother ghostwriting a blog post for under, say, 5 cents a word.  I drop as low as 3 a word if I'm both desperate for money and it looks like a quick, easy assignment on a subject I know well.  However, I'm not on Upwork so maybe the environment's different there.

Offline German_Translator

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Re: Hiring Ghostwriters on Upwork
« Reply #9 on: March 18, 2018, 01:54:50 PM »
Also note that Upwork takes a hefty bite out of freelancer's fees, so one wonders how they could offer very low prices:


https://support.upwork.com/hc/en-us/articles/211062538-Freelancer-Service-Fees?flash_digest=15108765175ca50a71b19cb403f2c746b868be51

Client Payment Processing Fees

Clients are charged a payment processing fee of 2.75%. To learn more, click here. Please note the client payment processing fee does not count towards the lifetime billings for calculating the freelancer's service fee.

Freelancer Marketplace & Pro Service Fees

Freelancers are charged a sliding fee based on your lifetime billings with each client (across all contracts you've ever had with that client company). Service fees are the same whether the contracts are hourly or fixed-price.

    20% for the first $500 you bill a client across all contracts with them
    10% for total billings with a client between $500.01 and $10,000
    5% for total billings with a client that exceed $10,000

Example: On a $600 project with a new client, a freelancer's service fee would be 20% on the first $500 and 10% on the remaining $100 for earnings after fees of $490.

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Offline daniel88888

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Re: Hiring Ghostwriters on Upwork
« Reply #10 on: April 17, 2018, 07:51:32 AM »
Honestly I think 1$ is a very very low compensation, you will never get a good product for these money. Just check how much a good ghostwriter earns and forget about idea to pay one dollar/100 words. A real professional won't even open such an offer. Talking about Upwork, there are many good freelancers, just check properly their profiles, read reviews and take a look at portfolios. Of course there are many amateurs, but sooner or later you will distinguish one who understands you and does his job well.

Offline munboy

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Re: Hiring Ghostwriters on Upwork
« Reply #11 on: April 17, 2018, 08:55:37 AM »
The adage "You get what you pay for" holds true 99.9% of the time. You might get lucky and find that diamond in the rough, that one kid who's actually good and trying to break into the business and make a little money, but odds are not good.

For example, I did some freelance editing for a small publishing company on a book that was ghostwritten. They weren't too happy when I told them it needed probably about 90% of it completely rewritten because it was that bad and the person they hired to write it fell off the world. I did what I could to clean it up with the time/money they gave me. I had to stop myself from doing major rewrites because that's not what they were paying me for. But, they paid cheap for the book to be written and the product showed it.

Online Rose Andrews

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Re: Hiring Ghostwriters on Upwork
« Reply #12 on: April 17, 2018, 10:25:12 AM »
Yes. That is too cheap.

I've earned well over a hundred thousand dollars on Upwork and its predecessor oDesk over the years and I wouldn't even look open the email for that rate. There is no real minimum cost but if the person you're looking at doesn't have both good reviews and a minimum posted hourly rate of at least $25.00 you probably aren't going to get anything other than crap from a content farm.

As a counterexample, I wrote a short story called Exile, which is currently sitting at #48 in short reads for science fiction more than five years after its release that went to an Upwork client for a lot more than $0.01/word.
As a fellow ghostie on Upwork I agree with this wholeheartedly. This amount wouldn't be worth the trouble.

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